KAUAI “THE GARDEN ISLAND” HAWAII
It is the northernmost island of the Hawaiian Islands and therefore the island where more sea enters. Maybe the island + different; Complicated to anticipate the waves, because being the 1st island attracts many of the winds and swells that then hit the rest of the islands. Therefore, Kauai has always been and is known as the most powerful island in terms of waves of all Hawaiian islands. If on the North Shore of Oahu there are 6 feet, it is very likely that on the North Shore of Kauai there are 2 or 3 more feet. Although one thing is certain, if you want quality waves, on the 2 islands you will find them, but lots + quality quantity of waves on the North Shore of Oahu Vs. That of Kauai. The North Shore of Oahu looks like an amusement park, while on Kauai, outside Hanalei Bay on the North Shore, there are many waves, but rarely surfable, because they all need very specific conditions and the wind is not normally The right one.
Scenario for many Hollywood movies, such as Jurassic Park. The Lost Ark … and more recently the series Lost, its beauty is palpable in every corner of the island; Although many of these corners are not accessible, either because they are private properties, or because of the difficulty and inaccessibility of reaching these places (such as the Na Pali Coast). So if you get a chance to catch a helicopter on a sunny day, do not even think about it, because you will understand the total beauty of the “garden island” as well it is called. An island where time seems to stop.
Although it is a volcanic island, it surprises the great amount of beaches that it has and the vegetation that it owns and that is mainly due to the amount of rain that receives (in Waialeale is the rainiest spot of the world) and to the multitude of waterfalls To see as many as you can, because they are breathtaking) and rivers that you have all over the island.
As far as surfing is concerned, much has been written and spoken of the dreaded Kauai, especially the Kauai boyz and his aggressiveness in the water and his mistrust in avoiding to teach you the secrets of this fascinating island, as well as That you record or photograph your waves; I can attest to this, although personally, we have nothing to reproach in this aspect, but quite the opposite, people are very coiled.
What is certain is that the island of Kauai is the island that is most suspicious of that modernity that has been growing and developing in the rest of the islands, especially on the great island of Hawaii, Maui and especially on Oahu . Here you will not find large buildings, much less skyscrapers and is that an old law requires that buildings do not exceed the height of the coconut trees … and is fulfilled. People are suspicious of this modernity and here the traditional is cultured and it is where much of the true aloha spirit and true Hawaiian culture resides; In spite of the fact that the rich Yankees find bounded and bought half island, to become their super houses of retirement and find fenced and limited many paradises, that should be of all and especially of the authentic owners of the island, or like Titus Kinimaka Says the owners of the sport of kings, surfing.
The house of many of Hawaiian surfers of recent times, such as Titus (the authentic “kai kane” Waterman, an institution in Kauai), which has its tent and school in Hanalei (the most surfing city in North Terry Chung, Laird Hamilton, Kaipo Jaquias, Braden Dias, Chava … all the Kauai Boyz video podcasts, Rochelle Ballard as a prominent girl, Dick Brewer (shaper) And like the Irons brothers; present and future.
HANALEI BAY – It is the main focus of surfing on Kauai. Located in the North Shore, the village is quiet and very pretty, with some surf shops, restaurants, supermarket and quiet, too much peace. Luxury houses and the big shit to the right of the bay, the Prince Resort.
Once you go down Highway 56 and see the great waterfall, the Australian pines and pass the famous wooden bridge that appears in the Blue Horizon, your adrenaline starts to increase and you understand that you are near a magical place. Many names, for the same site, Pinetrees (the famous wave), The Bowl, The Point, The middle, Impossibles, Flat Rock … but the only certain thing is that it is a right, with a reef that seems echoed by the Hand of god, the wave is dry, very dry and offers all kinds of maneuvers and very good tubes. From the Puu Poa Beach park, you will see the pier where the schools and the children are learning, you will have a good view of the wave, but still everything awaits you a good solo paddle, with the paranoia of the sharks, until The Bowl, on the inside; An olón in full rule, you’ve seen it a thousand times working in the videos where Bruce & Andy Irons (Antoñito Irons) come out, xq they are from here; Further back, The Point, on the outside, distribute the premises and the number of people, this is the place where most people are in Kauai, but there are still not so many people and although sensitive to the wind, when the conditions are good, it is A world-class wave.
To the right of the bay, under the hotel there are several peaks, where there are hardly any people, called, Hideaways. Good waves, but if the bay is working, you will not want to know about these waves. To the west of the bay is a very good left, WAI-COCO’S.
Hanaley Bay is a paradise already, with its waterfalls in the background and an impressive beach, rich in the North Shore … which in addition to its location receives great waves on all sides of its bay. The only peros, perhaps they are how sensitive it is to the wind and especially the subject of sharks … abound. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
Following the road to the west is TUNNELS & CANNONS – They are undoubtedly the 2 most demanding and hardest waves of the North Shore of Kauai, here even the most expert have given a good scare and not for less, xq are 2 of The most radical and disturbing waves I’ve ever seen. Sharing the same bay, Cannons is a wild reef that ends drastically and plummets, where the depth of the seas begins and shark dominance; A lefthand infarct, with a descent of pure adrenaline and where if you want to surf with few people, and even many times you can only do it, xq people usually stay in Hanalei. Scare out of the water
Seaward and across the bay is Tunnels, which breaks out, over the reef. After the super stradón and the paranoia with the buses, you can believe that you are only in the water; Although you will not be at all alone, xq the sharks here are a reality, several attacks, most sounded the one of Bethany Hamilton, in 2003.
The wave goes dry over the reef. Good Wipe-outs. Only for the brave. Good area for camping, like many sites all over the island, with a permit, easy to get.
But to the west reaching the area of ??Haena, hippie zone and camping, there are very beautiful places, caves and waves without people, but infected with buses; Follow to the end of the road and you will find a very nice beach. By road this is the + northwest you can get.
To the east of Hanalei there are many areas with potential, but the wind precludes surfing, the entire Anini area is beautiful, but it is basically for wind-lovers.
One of the places where there are more surfers and more localism is in KALIHIWAI, the most protected site of the wind in the east; There is less sea than Hanalei. The wave is usually basically the descent, with the adrenaline of which are the rocks and the cliff and the locals know very well how far they can approach. Throw a pipe and then there are waves that go undone and others that give + play. A derechón, inside a very beautiful place, but for the locals. Appears on the Kauai Boyz dvd.
Between Kilihiwai and the Kilauea lighthouse (going to see the cliff and the birds is amazing), there are several secret spots, if you want to surf is just an option.
Following the Kuhio Highway heading south you will arrive at UNREALS, in Anahola Bay, it is a good right-hand point break that runs all year round but is too exposed to wind, like most of the east coast. Further south, this KEALIA, fun sessions, but with a lot of wind, as well as the entire area of ??KAPAA and coconut trees, where is the mythical Tamba Surf Shop. The best thing about this area is HORNERS, in Wailua, a fun but windy left.
Go see the WILUA FALLS, brutal.
Near the airport area in Lihue, in front of the Marriott Resort, there is a longboard loop, KALAPAKI BEACH. Across the bay this AMMONIA’S.
Already in the south of the island, following highway 50, it is best to detour to Koloa and from there to the Poipu area, but when you get to the roundabout, remember to go to Lawai Road, until you reach Prince Huhio Park, Where are 2 of the jewels of the south swells, ACID DROPS & LONGHOUSE (PK’S). Acid Drops is in front of the Beach House restaurant, left and right breaking on a lava bottom. Powerful and tubular wave that breaks especially in summer with a take off of infarction. Longhouse is a very good left, when really this pumping, is one of the best waves on Kauai. The right in the middle is called CENTERS, of course.
In Poipu there is really beach, but it is ONLY for bodyboarding, BRENNECKES.
Returning to highway 50 south, to the southwest there are a couple of points in Port Allen, SALT POND & HANAPEPE RIVER MOUTH, factories, industrial area, muddy water and sharks, make you think of it at least 2 times. Reefs of poor quality.
The best wave of the whole south, where we have been given very good baths, and my favorite of all Kauai, for my taste the best wave is undoubtedly KAPALA, also called INFINITES … and the name says it all. Once past the post office, follow the main road that is reddish at the sides and you will arrive at a bridge, if you see cars stop at once, xq will mean that the biggest jewel of the island is working. Park the car and look for a path next to the bridge that will take you along a walking path, until you reach this magical place. Of the waves that remain engraved in your heart and in your head forever, for everything. Very similar to Mompiche (Ecuador), but faster still and tubular. Brutal Izquierdon, which breaks dry on a perfect live reef, several sections, the last + soft is catching water on the channel. Magic wave, tubazos, maneuvers; Pakalas is one of those special waves … Usually small days there are few people and longboarders in the arm of the wave. The wave is intense even in the waiting, because the water is brown, you do not see your feet sitting on the table and is infected with sharks, although as the locals say when you ask them. “Sharks ???” “Yes, many, but they have plenty of food” and the only thing you expect is not to be their food that day. Between series and series, you often feel like bait hehe. After a good surfing in Pakalas, you know that it is unbeatable. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
The town of WAIMEA (nothing to do with Oahu) the 2nd capital of Kauai, is beautiful and has good waves at the mouth of the river. Go see WAIMEA CANNYONS, spectacular.
Further west, immense beaches begin, beachless waves, stretching to BARKING SANDS, MAJORS BAY, MAJORS POINT (DAVIDSON POINT), are within military zones, so it does not encourage surfing much. The road in the west ends at the POLIHALE State Park. From here, on a clear day you see the island of NIIHAU, where until very recently, only allowed the Hawaiians to live their traditional life.
Waves and powerful waves all over the west coast, but only accessible by boat, xq from Haena to Polihale, there is no road, you can only do the searching by boat; It is all the NA PALI COAST, one of the most beautiful and unspoiled areas of the island.
KAUAI is a paradise for anyone and especially for a surfer, powerful waves, few people, a place that seems out of a novel, but at the same time has some handicaps, such as wind, rain and sharks; An explosive combination, that only the quality of the waves, often clouds the lucidity of decisions. A full-blown surfari and an island to be discovered, with a lot of potential and although mostly virgin, is one of the sites, where it is shown that with money, many wealthy Yankees have appropriated many jewels, but fortunately the island of KAUAI is a gem in itself. It seems that time does not pass and it is easy to imagine how things were not so long ago. An island … island.
MAHALO KAUAI & ALOHA
TEXT: SURF CANTABRA SCHOOL
PHOTOS: SURF CANTABRA SCHOOL
SURFERS: ALE PALOMERO, DAVD “CAPI” & NACHETE GARCÍA